Impex Records

Impex Records

Impex Records is a Los Angeles-based record label that releases high-quality audiophile records, CDs and SACDs. The creators were previously employed by Cisco Records, a similar record label. In 2008, Cisco was shut down by its Japanese parent company. Part of the staff then founded Impex Records.

The lacquer for Impex’s 180g vinyl releases is usually cut from the original analog master tapes. Carefully pressed 180g records as well as the intricately produced covers secure high quality standards The vinyl reissues are available at 45RPM and 33 RPM.

Friday Night in San Francisco IR Front
Friday Night in San Francisco, Impex Records, 2019
Isao Suzuki Orang Front
Isao Suzuki Quartet +2, Orang-Utan, Impex Records 2018

Stylistically, the catalog moves between jazz, classical, soul and rock. Highlights include albums by Miles Davis, Thelonius Monk, Johnny Cash, Billy Joel, Jennifer Warnes and the legendary guitar album Friday Night In San Francisco by Al diMeola, John McLaughlin and Paco de Lucia. A bit more exotic but always worth listening to are the reissues of the Japanese jazz label Three Blind Mice. Especially the albums by the Godfather of Japanese jazz, Isao Suzuki, set standards with outstanding sound quality.

In 2020 Impex has added One Step releases to its program. With this pressing method, only 500 copies of each lacquer can be pressed. Although this dramatically increases manufacturing costs, audiophile record labels swear by this method because it improves sound quality by a good bit, as we can confirm since the uebervinyl duel of Bob Dylan’s Blood On The Tracks. The first track in the Impex 1STEP series was Café Blue by Patricia Barber. Similar to MFSL’s One Step series, this release also received a high-quality slipcase made of cardboard and the edition was strictly limited to 5,000 copies.

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